We can learn a lot from Peter in the Bible. Peter was an encourager, especially to those who were struggling with persecution as believers. He wanted others to know that suffering doesn’t equate with doing something wrong, but instead, it can actually be the outcome of doing something right. Being persecuted for our faith in the Lord is far better than not putting our trust and faith in Him at all, according to Peter’s first epistle. “For it is better, if it is the will of God, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil.” If we are doing what God has called us to do, then the suffering we face very minor compared to the riches of His glory.
The Lord has called you and me to live an honorable, godly and humble life for Him, and Peter gives us the hope and advice we need to succeed in our walks with our Heavenly Father.
First, Peter gives us the hope we need during difficult times. Our trials were not meant to harm us, but rather they are used for a greater purpose. Trials produce something in us that cannot be attained without some kind of suffering. The death and the resurrection of Jesus Christ is our example of how trials are used for a better purpose. Once Jesus had died a painful death, His Spirit came to dwell in us so that we could have 1)freedom from all sin, 2)eternal life 3)A relationship with Him, once we’ve accepted Him as our Saviour. The resurrection of Jesus has been given to has as our one true hope, because He loves us so much and bore our sins.
Second, Peter gives us a reason to “cling to” this hope. Anyone can say “everything is going to be okay, don’t worry” but how can we know this for sure? When we read 1 Peter 5:10, he says “But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen and settle you.” I love how he says “settle you”, Jesus wants to “settle” us, and our hearts, when we are doubting His ability to help us in times of suffering. We often worry that He won’t accomplish anything out of our present suffering, but that’s not how He works. He is a faithful, loving and merciful God who wants to produce good fruit in us and strengthen our character. We may never find out why we went through something, but Jesus knows and we need to trust Him that He has our best interest in mind.
Third, Peter warns us about our opposition. Of course, there will always be nay-sayers that are constantly making fun of us or putting our faith down, but there is also a real working enemy called the devil who seeks to devour you and me. The enemy knows our weaknesses and will do anything to keep our attention off of the Lord. He loves to whisper lies of discouragement and fear into our ears, which is why Peter tells us we need to stay strong in our faith and resist the devil (1 Peter 5:9).
The Lord will deliver us and help us to grow in every area of our lives. By reading His Word and studying it each day, we can renew our minds and thoughts in order to become stronger in our faith and give others the hope they need.